“how do I get – how do I get to sleep?
Please let me sleep.
po-po-poetry. that´ll work
´Come sweet slumber, enshroud me in thy purple cloak.´
hm. doesn´t even rhyme.”
~ Paranoimia, The Art of Noise (with Max Headroom)
I have battled insomnia for nearly my entire life. There are lots of causes and I have a nice little list going of why I suffer from it but that isn’t worth wasting brain space or bandwidth on. I was a sleepwalker (somnambulism) when I was little, a sleep talker (somniloquy), and a guardian to a whole host of nightmares and night terrors. Although I haven’t walked in my sleep since I was around six or seven years old and I no longer talk in my sleep (might have to check with my husband on that one), I still suffer insomnia, nightmares, and, occasionally, night terrors. In fact, my newest “game” is to try and interpret those nightmares and night terrors and try and figure out what in my life is unresolved.
I don’t know if I’ll ever actually win the war and sleep peacefully ever after or not, but I have won a few of what feel like UFC cage fights. I can now go a few months in between bouts, which is pretty awesome. My last bout was about a week in the middle of June. Before that, there were a couple of days in March. January was just hell. And here I sit in my kitchen at 6:30 in the morning, having just witnessed the beautiful pink and orange glow of a Northwestern sunrise over the foothills of the Cascade Mountains. I now understand, by the way, what is meant by “purple mountains’ majesty”.
All week long I’ve wrestled with not falling asleep or staying asleep or getting back to sleep when I woke up to, well, you know…. go. In the last six days I’ve tried waiting it out, I’ve taken “Simply Sleep” (Hint: You really do need eight hours to sleep. Trying to get out of bed after only six is a real bitch!), did Alka Seltzer Cold medicine figuring warding off the impending cold might be helpful, and full doses of Trazodone, which is my last resort, my little “in-case-of-zombie-attack-break-glass” in a bottle. I’ve had lots of friends and family and well-wishers on Facebook suggest warm milk or melatonin. And no, I do not take naps.
Just when I thought I had it, BAM! Here we go again. Awake until midnight last night, sleep until 3:15 AM, when I was awakened by a dream so awful that in it I was screaming all the way from my toenails up at someone I love so dearly I would kick my own ass if I actually treated her that way. Eyes popped open, heart racing, covered in sweat, unsure of my surroundings, afraid I might have actually been screaming out loud, afraid that if I had been my husband might have lost an eardrum somewhere in there, and panicked, upset, anxious, angry, and so so terribly sad.
I’ve been awake since.
I usually make a deal with myself and this was no different: Try and relax, try and meditate my way back to sleep, but if it doesn’t come, at least stay in bed until my alarm might go off. Never out of bed earlier than 5 or 5:30. And, for some strange reason, Max Headroom’s words always echo in my head: “Come sweet slumber, enshroud me in thy purple cloak.” I’m tired. I’m cranky. So all I can say is this: Screw you, Max Headroom. What the hell do you know… you’re a freaking cartoon inside of a computer. You don’t actually sleep nor do you need it. And quit babbling, for crying out loud, I’m trying to sleep!
So here I sit, typing a blog post. In my hazy, tired, unsleeping brain fog I came up with an acrostic. Fairly juvenile, but I don’t care. I’m too tired to care. Enjoy…